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NDDC to Commence free aquaculture training in Bayelsa

NDDC to Commence free aquaculture training in Bayelsa

The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has announced plans to collaborate with the Bayelsa State Government and a private firm to provide training in aquaculture for youths at the Bayelsa Aquaculture Village in Yenegwe, Yenagoa Local Government Area of the state. This initiative aims to empower youths in the Niger Delta region by creating employment opportunities and promoting food security.

Victor Antai, the NDDC Executive Director of Projects, disclosed this during a visit to the Bayelsa State-owned aquaculture farm, which is currently managed by Aquaseas Company Limited. The visit was accompanied by Mrs. Winifred Madume, Director of Agric and Fisheries, Dr. Week Doodei, Director of Procurement, and other directors of the Commission.

Antai highlighted the importance of the NDDC’s Holistic Opportunities, Projects, and Engagement (HOPE) program, which focuses on agriculture as a key component. He emphasized the Commission’s commitment to engaging youth in agriculture to achieve food security in the Niger Delta region.

Impressed by the facilities at the Aquaculture Village, including a hatchery, earth ponds, feed mill, fish processing, and packaging units, Antai expressed the intention to train youths from the nine states of the Niger Delta in aquaculture. After training, participants will be allocated ponds to apply their knowledge and start their businesses, contributing to the region’s economic development.

The NDDC plans to establish a tripartite partnership involving the Bayelsa State Government, the private firm, and the Commission. This collaboration aims to explore opportunities that benefit the youth of the Niger Delta region, aligning with the NDDC’s commitment to promoting agriculture and food security.

Antai highlighted the NDDC’s recent partnership with the Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria (RIFAN) as part of efforts to ensure food security in the region. This partnership underscores the Commission’s proactive approach to agricultural development and empowerment initiatives.

Steve Okeleji, Managing Director of Aquaseas Company Limited, lamented the underutilization of the aquaculture village and emphasized the need for collaboration with the NDDC to enhance capacity building for youths in the region. He explained that the village, spanning 127 hectares of land, houses 500 fish ponds, with 60 currently stocked with catfish and tilapia.

Olalekan Adeleke, Aquaseas Programmes and Project Lead, highlighted the village’s integrated facilities, including a hatchery, dry chain processing unit, feed mill, and testing laboratory. He revealed that the village has already trained thousands of youths sponsored by the Bayelsa State Government and collaborated with other organizations to empower youth in the region.

Overall, the partnership between the NDDC, Bayelsa State Government, and private firm signals a significant step towards harnessing the potential of aquaculture to create employment opportunities and promote economic development in the Niger Delta region.

This Article is Fact-Checked. See Policy.
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